Agony (2018 video game)

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Agony
Agony 2017 pre-release Steam.jpg
Developer(s) Madmind Studio
Publisher(s) PlayWay
Director(s) Tomasz Dutkiewicz
Producer(s)
  • Krzysztof Kostowski
  • Jakub Trzebiński
Designer(s)
  • Jakub Grabka
  • Wojciech Babiński
  • Tomasz Dutkiewicz
Programmer(s) Daniel Witek
Artist(s) Tomasz Dutkiewicz
Writer(s) Tomasz Dutkiewicz
Composer(s) Draco Nared
Engine Unreal Engine 4
Platform(s)
Release
  • Windows, PS4, XB1
  • May 29, 2018
  • Nintendo Switch
  • 2018
Genre(s) Survival horror
Mode(s) Single-player

Agony is a 2018 dark fantasy survival horror video game developed by Madmind Studio and published by PlayWay. Players begin their journey as a tormented soul within the depths of Hell without any memories about their past. The special ability to control people on their path, and possess weak-minded demons, gives the player the necessary measures to survive in the extreme conditions they are in.[1]

Gameplay[edit]

The game is played from a first-person perspective. The player controls one of the Martyrs condemned to Hell, Amraphel (aka Nimrod) tasked with meeting the Red Goddess, one of the creators of Hell, in an effort to escape and return to the land of the living. Unlike other Martyrs, the player possesses the unique ability to possess both other Martyrs and, later in the game, lesser and higher demons, giving them access to special abilities. Using mechanics such as crouching and holding their breath, the player can avoid demons. Besides hiding, the player needs to solve puzzles in order to unlock new areas. There are available hidden statues that the player can collect, as well as paintings which are possible to discover.

Plot[edit]

The story follows a lost soul trapped in Hell without any memory of his former life. From what is revealed of the protagonist's backstory, he was a king of an ancient land who made a Faustian bargain with the Red Goddess. In-story, he is referred to as both Nimrod by the Goddess and Amraphel by other condemned souls, some of whom still have their memories, blaming the protagonist for them being damned to Hell because of the acts he committed while alive. As the protagonist wanders through the wastelands of Hell, he discovers a possibility of escaping through the aid of the Red Goddess. Determined, he travels to the Red Goddess' lair to learn how he can be set free.

The story features multiple endings, dependent on how the player progresses and choices they make.

Development[edit]

In November 2016, the developers of Agony started a Kickstarter campaign to fund the creation of the game. The Kickstarter campaign surpassed its goal and ended in December 2016.[2] The game was originally scheduled for a release on March 30, 2018, but was delayed to May 29, 2018.[2]

The game originally had received an "Adults Only" rating from the Entertainment Software Rating Board due to its level of violence. This led to the developers toning down some of the violence to allow the game to receive a "Mature" rating instead and allowed it to be rated by PEGI.

A planned "Adults Only" unrated patch for PC was later dropped due to "legal issues".[3] However, on June 6, 2018, the developers said they were "talking with Steam representatives" about offering Agony Unrated as "a separate title produced and published by Madmind Studio and without the involvement of any publishers." For those who already own the original game, this version will be either free DLC or a separate purchase at 99% off, which currently is the highest possible discount on Steam's platform.[4] After announcing the financial problems of the company and canceling the Unrated version of the game, the basic game docked on August 1, 2018, a considerable amount of updates on the platforms on which it debuted.[5]

On September 5, 2018 Madmind Studio announced a partnership with Forever Entertainment to bring Agony to Nintendo Switch. It will arrive on Nintendo Switch later in 2018.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Aggregate score
AggregatorScore
Metacritic45/100 (PC)[6]
37/100 (PS4)[7]
34/100 (Xbox)[8]

Agony was met with "generally unfavourable reviews", according to Metacritic.[6][7][8] The Escapist's Ben "Yahtzee" Croshaw in his Zero Punctuation review referred to it as "liquidized offal." He specifically criticized the game's overuse of gore, stating: "... environments are simultaneously too busy and extremely boring; turn things up to eleven and stay there, and it's just as dull as staying at one", as well as the unforgiving stealth mechanics.[9]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Playway - Agony". Playway.com.
  2. ^ a b "New details about the release date". Kickstarter.
  3. ^ Chalk, Andy (May 28, 2018). "Hellish horror game Agony will be slightly toned down, 'uncensored' patch plan dropped". PC Gamer. Retrieved May 28, 2018.
  4. ^ "Agony :: Agony Unrated!". 2018-06-06. Retrieved 2018-06-13.
  5. ^ "Agony". Kickstarter. Retrieved 2018-08-04.
  6. ^ a b "Agony for PC Reviews". Metacritic.
  7. ^ a b "Agony for PS4 Reviews". Metacritic.
  8. ^ a b "Agony for Xbox One Reviews". Metacritic.
  9. ^ "Zero Punctuation : Agony". The Escapist. Retrieved 2018-06-14.

External links[edit]